MADISON – The State Assembly resumed regular Floor session in Madison today. In the list of bills for passage were multiple Republican-led pieces of legislation relating to public schools including: banning antiracism and antisexism training, requiring the reporting and publicizing of credit recovery courses, and incorporating cursive writing into curriculum. Representative Shelton (D-Green Bay) spoke against one bill in specific, AB488 relating to: requiring school boards to make information about learning materials and educational activities used for pupil instruction available to the public, and released this statement in response:
“In the midst of a barrage against public schools today, the WI GOP presented a bill requiring all materials used in a classroom for group education be made available to anyone on the Internet. Under the false guise of ‘increased transparency’ and using weighted buzzwords like ‘protection from indoctrination,’ Assembly Republicans passed this bill in efforts to push another unnecessary burden onto our already overworked and underpaid teachers, while ignoring currently-existing venues employed across the state to promote open communications between teachers, students, and families.
“Attempting to bottle up the learning experience — to constrict it — with the type of legislation in front of us today, with the knowledge and clear evidence that our public schools are already employing a number of strategies to engage families in the learning process, and then, on top of it, threatening professional educators with lawsuits, only aims to serve the efforts of the Republican Party and those seeking school privatization. It aims to defund our public schools and to dismantle the highly specialized profession of education.
“Instead of bringing a lawsuit, perhaps instead those concerned with school transparency should bring themselves to the table that already exists. Meet the teachers where they are – and support your public schools.”